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Insurrection: Insurrection Trilogy Book 1 Hardcover – 14 Oct 2010

121 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; First Edition edition (14 Oct. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340963646
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340963647
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 4.2 x 23.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 296,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robyn Young was born in Oxford and grew up in the Midlands and a fishing village in Devon, during which time she won awards for poetry and edited a regular page in a regional newspaper. After hitchhiking to Brighton at 19, she worked as a festival organiser, a music promoter and a financial advisor. She wrote two novels before gaining a Masters in Creative Writing at the University of Sussex.

Her first published novel, BRETHREN, went straight into the Sunday Times top ten, where it remained for five weeks, becoming the bestselling hardback debut of the year. It entered the New York Times top twenty on publication in the US and was named book of the year by German newspaper Bild. Her second novel, CRUSADE, reached number 2 and REQUIEM completed the trilogy. In 2007, Robyn was named one of Waterstone's twenty-five 'authors of the future', judged by a panel of one hundred industry insiders who were asked to nominate the authors they believed would contribute the greatest body of work over the next quarter century.

The inspiration for Robyn's new bestselling trilogy, which began in 2010 with INSURRECTION and continued in 2012 with RENEGADE, was inspired by a research trip to Scotland and is based on the life of Robert Bruce. The third novel, KINGDOM, will be published in 2014 in the month of the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn.

Alongside writing novels, Robyn has collaborated on a WWII screenplay. Her novels have been published in 22 countries in 19 languages and together have sold almost 2 million copies.

Product Description


immaculately researched and carefully written, evoking a very particular - and largely unexplored - time and place. The fights are sensational (Daily Telegraph)

The fast and furious start to a majestic new trilogy (Women and Home)

'leads you in swiftly and doesn't let you go' (Australian Women's Weekly)

'this tale captures the struggles of a tumultuous time' (Australian Daily Telegraph)

another fine novel by Young and a promising start to an exciting new series (Canberra Times)

This is a big book, and the trilogy a huge project to undertake. From the evidence so far, Young's fans will not be disappointed as she meticulously ploughs through the sweep of history and brings to life one of its most enigmatic characters (Daily Mail)

'Ideal for anyone who loves historical fiction and anyone else who wants a well written and intricate read' (Sentinel (Staffordshire))

'A cracking plot and charismatic characters are set against the convincingly researched background of the violent, gory Anglo-Scottish civil wars' (Saga)

Given the events are fixed in historical fiction, the trick is to find supplementary reasons for actions, and Young's conceit - that Edward I is trying to capture four relics (one of which is the Stone of Destiny) - gives a great ulterior motivation. The learning is never cumbersome, a deft trick when describing medieval warfare in all its clunking barbarism. (Scotsman)

Young writes with remarkable accuracy, action-packed efficiency and gut-wrenching violence (The Times on REQUIEM)

An outstanding contemporary writer (Kate Mosse on Robyn Young)

A sweeping historical adventure as well as a cracking sequel (Financial Times on CRUSADE)

One of the best historical debuts in recent memory. Exciting and enthralling. (John Connolly on BRETHREN)

Wonderful . . . loaded with atmosphere, action, and intrigue (Steve Berry on BRETHREN)

Richly worked and captivating . . . an epic story of war, intrigue and heroism (Good Book Guide on BRETHREN)

Book Description

Where Game of Thrones sets kingdoms at war within a fantasy world, the Insurrection trilogy is based on the breath-taking true story of Robert the Bruce's battle to become king.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

133 of 139 people found the following review helpful By J. Cooper on 18 Oct. 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is a novel about politics, successions within the nobility and the bid for Royal thrones. These central themes are woven into the period of time broadly labelled as the `Wars of Scottish Independence' and involve famous historical people including William Wallace, Robert Bruce and Edward Longshanks.

You may be wondering at this point one of two things; one, `well that sounds like all the ingredients for an interesting non-fiction historical study' or two, `I hope this is not a cheap rendition of "Braveheart" in the form of a book'. In response to the first point, I can definitely say that this is first and foremost a fictional novel set within the historical fiction genre. Robyn Young's writing style is compelling and fully dimensional. For example, she gently leads you into the story before unleashing the required history and knowledge of the local alliances and enmities necessary for a complete understanding of the background to the novel. In this way, you are fully immersed within the story and hardly notice the gradual inclusion of history which would probably put off a new reader if listed in its entirety at the beginning. In answer to the second point, this is certainly not a rehashed rendition of the famously historically inaccurate "Braveheart". Wallace, Bruce and Edward are completely different people within `Insurrection'. To me they appeared to be more balanced, grounded and possess a full range of human emotions in comparison to their relatively one sided cinematic counterparts. In addition to this statement, you will get the sense from reading the novel and then seeing the select bibliography at the end of the book that `Insurrection' is thoroughly well researched.
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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Marcus Pailing (Bartlesnipe's Revenge) VINE VOICE on 21 Nov. 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I had enjoyed Robyn Young's trilogy on the Knights Templar (although, if I am honest, the third book was a bit disappointing compared with the others) so I was eager to see what she made of the Scottish Wars of Independence. I was pleased to see that she was focusing on Robert Bruce, rather than William Wallace, as the Bruce, as well as actually becoming king (although not in this first book) is a more interesting character than Wallace.

Robert Bruce is particularly interesting because he equivocated so much over his support for rebellion against the English occupation of Scotland, notwithstanding his own claim to the throne. It is especially hard to understand quite why he kept changing his loyalties, despite the obvious reasons of pragmatism and self-interest. Robyn Young tries to get to the bottom of this ambiguity in his character, and does it rather well - while it might not answer the question historically, it is a shrewd attempt to get to the bottom of the Bruce's motivations.

Young manages the complex politics of the period well, and keeps the reader interested. The Bruce clan's feud with their well-known enemies, the Comyns, is believable and sustained, as is Robert Bruce's difficult relationship with his father, who retired to his Essex estates rather than take part in the insurrection against Edward I.

One has to feel sorry for Edward I, though.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Plucked Highbrow on 11 Aug. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In the 13th century King Edward the First of England has conquered Wales and now sets his sights on Scotland. After the convenient death of the Scottish King Edward invades and sets up a new puppet monarch. The Scottish nobles are not happy but fight amongst themselves. One family of powerful nobles with a claim to the throne are the Bruce family and this book follows the story of Robert Bruce from childhood through service to the king and finally through to exile after supporting William Wallace.

As this is the 700th anniversary of the battle of Bannockburn there has been much about Bruce in the media and as someone with an interest in medieval history I thought to give this book a go. It's a weighty tome and obviously well-researched but it just didn't grab my attention as much as it could have done. The difficulty with historical fiction is melding fictional characterisation to historical facts and that is where Young's writing falls down for me. However I have bought the second book in the series so I will continue the story!
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful By grimlyfiendish on 29 Oct. 2010
Format: Hardcover
"It was the voice of God. And God was furious."

Insurrection is the first in a new trilogy, centering on the adventures of Robert the Bruce, and it follows on from the same author's outstanding Templar series The Brethren trilogy. And on the evidence of this first book in the new series, it might even be going to outdo Brethren. It's that good.

The story is massive, with a large cast of characters, both Scottish and English (and French and Norwegian, come to think of it) - one of the strengths of this novel is that it tells the story from both sides, so we read almost as much of Edward I and his court, as we do of the Scots. The times were brutal for Scotland, especially for any who didn't fancy being subjects for the English. What Bruce offered his people was a sense of unity, purpose and pride. William Wallace appears, but it's Robert who is the true leader and the genius of the Scottish rebel cause.

The story is handled with immense skill, the battlescenes breathtakingly vivid (Stirling Bridge, to name but one, and Falkirk) and I thought the characters all rich and involving. Robert is at this stage in his life still quite young - he's only 23 at the end of Insurrection, and we'll no doubt see him growing more mature and experienced in the next two books, much as Will did in the Brethren trilogy. Edward I is a rich, nuanced 'villain' if villain is quite the right word. There are various intriguing subplots including an Arthurian prophecy, and more than a dash of romance - personally I prefer the more adventurous side of the story, and I can't stress it enough: this novel delivers in spades. There are also some nice touches of humour. I particularly enjoyed a rather blackly comic incident involving some solders attacked by wasps.
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